Friday, February 11, 2011

Reginald Johnson - Godfather Of Turntablism!

In the summer of 1927 the manager of the Theatre De Luxe cinema in Leeds replaced his orchestra with one man and a Brunswick Panatrope - a dual turntable record player. Rather than just playing records over the films like other Panatrope operators, Reginald Johnson, a skilled musician, recognised the full potential of the machine to develop an entirely new technique of musical presentation.

By October Johnson had a library of 250 records, and was combining sections of 25-40 discs per film, marking the segments with chalk, working from a complex cue sheet, and changing the needle on each deck for every record played. I don’t think he did any intentional scratching, but I think there’s reasonable grounds to name him the Godfather of Turntablism.

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